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A Comparative Analysis of Direct Democracy, Two-Candidate Elections, and Three-Candidate Elections in an Experimental Environment

Plott, Charles R. (1991) A Comparative Analysis of Direct Democracy, Two-Candidate Elections, and Three-Candidate Elections in an Experimental Environment. In: Laboratory Research in Political Economy. University of Michigan Press , Ann Arbor, MI, pp. 11-31. ISBN 9780472102037. https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20140320-161654696

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Abstract

This study explores the behavioral properties of political processes in a very simple environment. The processes are two-candidate elections, three-candidate elections, and large committees. These alternative political processes are implemented under laboratory experimental conditions in which the issues and underlying population preferences over issues are held constant. This allows the behavioral implications of the decision rule to be observed without the compounding complications caused by changing issues and attitudes. Such a setting provides a method for checking the predictive accuracy of spatial models and related game-theoretic models of candidate competition. If the models are sufficiently inaccurate in simple laboratory environments, then they might readily be rejected as applicable to the much more complicated, naturally occurring systems. In addition, the experimental design provides a comparison of selected aspects of behavior of these alternative processes.


Item Type:Book Section
Additional Information:© 1991 University of Michigan Press. The financial support of the National Science Foundation and the Caltech Program for Enterprise and Public Policy is gratefully acknowledged. The Guggenheim Foundation and the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences also provided time and the research assistance of Lynn Gale and Ron Rice.
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Persistent URL:https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20140320-161654696
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:44435
Collection:CaltechAUTHORS
Deposited By: Susan Vite
Deposited On:21 Mar 2014 18:31
Last Modified:03 Oct 2019 06:17

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